Ron Quigley is a Hollywood actor and director, but he’s a Pittsburgh guy at heart.
The Los Angeles resident returns home every year to host the Pittsburgh Independent Film Festival, which has featured dozens of under-the-radar features, short films, documentaries, animations, webisodes and music videos from around the world for the past 13 years.
This year’s award ceremony will take place August 5-8 at the Parkway Theater in Stowe Township. Tickets start at $ 13. Visitors can purchase a three-day pass for $ 30.
It’s an affair of the heart for Quigley, a longtime Pittsburgh firefighter who left for the West Coast after retiring.
He’s not just the festival organizer; His 23-minute short film “A Stark Reality” will debut on August 7th at 7pm. Based on a personal tragedy, the heartbreaking story revolves around addiction and its impact on a family.
“The cathartic part for me was writing the script,” says Quigley, who starred and directed the 2019 film.
Quigley found the other festivals through FilmFreeway, a submission platform that connects low-budget filmmakers from around the world with festival organizers. The lineup includes projects from the USA, Canada, Taiwan, Denmark, Singapore, France, Sweden, Ireland, Australia and Romania.
Pittsburgh is of course represented.
Steel-Man, a horror film about a Yinzer superhero fighting zombies at a comic convention, will debut on August 8th at 3:30 pm. Filming was quite an experience and Mike “Steel-Man” Palmer, who was the writer and director and star in the Blood and Guts spectacle, can’t wait for people to see it.
The festival is an opportunity to see rising stars, including Pittsburgh-born Eamonn McElfresh.
The 13-year-old from Highland Park is the title character in Jack and the Treehouse, which was filmed in western Pennsylvania.
“Jack and the Treehouse” – in which Eamonn’s character tries to prevent his father from selling the family land – was a hit at festivals. At the New York International Film Awards, Eamonn was even named Best Child Actor.
Inspired by the 1992 Disney movie Newsies, the Pittsburgh Creative and Performing Arts (CAPA) student began acting at the age of 7.
“You will get about 10 percent of the roles you audition for,” he says. “Don’t think you’re not good if you don’t get a role; it just means that you are not exactly what they’re looking for. “
Aaron and Jackie Stubna, the owners of the 45-seat Parkway Theater, are pleased to host the festival and welcome moviegoers back to the 84-year-old building, which also houses a bar, lounge area and the Abjuration Brewing Co.
“It’s our first big film event since Covid,” says Aaron Stubna.
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